April 27, 2016

Do you think Trump can't get elected because he's got such high unfavorability ratings and no one ever gets elected with negatives like that?

I've become bored at the sight of another column on that subject. You think Trump's speech is bad? How about the overwhelming badness of the speech about Trump? This one idea has been stated and stated so many times: Trump can't be popular because he's so unpopular. In the end he'll have to lose, because at some point all that unpopularity is going to have to catch up with and overtake the popularity.

Scott Adams rips into "The Unfavorability Illusion":
Literally everything about Trump’s campaign has violated form. He has no government experience, he isn’t polite, he hasn’t mastered the policy details, he isn’t taking money from big donors, and on and on. Yet he is poised to take the Republican nomination.

So none of the old rules apply to Trump.... No traditional politician could overcome a 70% unfavorability rating at this stage of the election cycle. But Trump isn’t a traditional politician.... Trump has special tools....
There follows a 13-point list of things Trump could do to win. You might think: That's a lot of points, but I think there's something we could call The List Illusion. The fact that there is a list with a 13 points gives the impression that there must 13 separate, distinctive things of relatively equivalent weight. But, come on. That's so many points. It's kind of a con within the dispelling of an illusion about a con. There's stuff like:
8. Trump has already improved his haircut. The color is no longer orange and the cut is much better. Humans are visual creatures, and that old haircut probably accounted for about 10 points of his 70% unfavorable rating....

12. Trump can push “love” over hate. As I predicted some time ago, he is already saying love, love, love. This persuasion will take lots of time and repetition to have an impact, but Trump has time, and he controls the rate of repetition.
Scott Adams can't lose. It's 1. funny and 2. interesting and 3. weird and 4. readable and 5. different and 6. Trump-related and 7. often presented in the form of a list and 8. he's bald and 9. we pre-love him for "Dilbert" and 10. he says love and 11. he's always telling us that it's for entertainment purposes only and 12. he's always already entertaining us and 13. 13 is a good number.

87 comments:

sean said...

I don't know if Trump can win. I do know that when people without any significant government experience have been elected (e.g., Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura), they have been ineffective, because they lack (i) a sophisticated understanding of the political (as opposed to electoral) process, (ii) a network of allies and supporters throughout the establishment, and (iii) a coherent political philosophy. Officials like this haven't been disastrous or dangerous, just ineffective.

cubanbob said...

For all of his negatives he has one positive: Hillary. Possibly the only candidate with even more negatives than Trump. Why in Virginia alone the Democrats had to enlist the felon vote just to help her in November. She can't win only with the votes of living law abiding citizens.

Trump vs Hillary. We are now officially a third world country.

Brando said...

"This one idea has been stated and stated so many times: Trump can't be popular because he's so unpopular."

Except popularity is measurable and what else are you going to do to determine if someone is popular? That's like arguing "just because that band can't sell records doesn't mean its record sales suck". Sure, it's circular, but many of us have gone into detail to explain Trump's unpopularity--his blundering on the campaign trail, his inconsistent and often contradictory messages, his unnecessary cruelty, his childishness, his seeming insecurity--all of those things tend to translate into his high unfavorables. Maybe it sounds circular to you, but this whole "hey, he breaks the rules, so it makes sense that he'll get all those likely voters to come around" is just as tiresome.

It sounds like you have a soft spot for Trump. That's fine, many do, and perhaps you can articulate it. But there's a lot of people he is just not reaching, and many more he's turning away, which works well for the second most unpopular candidate this cycle.

David Begley said...

A massive and effective paid and unpaid media campaign will doom Trump. Much of it will be done by targeting ads to the right voters on Facebook.

We saw a fairly good one with Trump and women; in his own words.There is so, so much material. One will feature Roy Cohn's defense of Trump in that housing discrimination case against blacks.

Trump has not really seen negative ads in any volume. By October Trump's negatives will be even higher. Appearing on Fox doesn't help him with that problem.

Brando said...

"For all of his negatives he has one positive: Hillary. Possibly the only candidate with even more negatives than Trump. Why in Virginia alone the Democrats had to enlist the felon vote just to help her in November. She can't win only with the votes of living law abiding citizens."

The problem is most surveys have him even more unpopular than her. She should have been very beatable. And this adding of 200,000 ex-felons to the rolls is going to make a blue-leaning state even bluer this year. Terry McAuliffe was a good investment for Clinton.

"Trump vs Hillary. We are now officially a third world country."

I liken it to living in a country like France--our choice on the Left is a corrupt quasi-socialist, and our choice on the Right is a Nativist/Nationalist. There's not really a moderate-libertarian choice among the major parties.

Brando said...

"A massive and effective paid and unpaid media campaign will doom Trump. Much of it will be done by targeting ads to the right voters on Facebook."

The other question is Hillary's ground game--if her team learned anything from Obama, they'll have microtargeted voters and organized them at the neighborhood level to increase minority and leftist turnout. Compare that with a GOP nominee who has no real ground structure but has coasted on free media.

Usually by now the GOP nominee has wrapped up the coalition and is focusing on the general election campaign. Every week they're eating each other just harms their chances.

Rocketeer said...

Officials like this haven't been disastrous or dangerous, just ineffective.

This is one of the most effective arguments for choosing Trump over Hillary I've ever seen.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

The thought of Trump having "special tools" that enable him to defy convention has got me wondering whether anyone out there is putting together the case that he's the anti-Christ.

Alexander said...

I remember when not only was Trump's ceiling 25-30%, it was 25-30% among Republican primary voters.

Now granted, Connecticut and Rhode Island are hotbeds of ignorant racist xenoislamotransphobic neo-Confederates that are obviously Trump's bread-and-butter.

Maybe it's like a cartoon; as long as we refuse to acknowledge the dire warnings of our intellectual and moral superiors that we have run over the edge of the cliff, we won't fall down.

Choo-choo!

Sebastian said...

"Scott Adams can't lose" Just to illustrate that you don't like making statements that can be refuted by reality?

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

Perhaps I should add that Professor Ehrman claims that the book of Revelation is nothing more than one of many such stories from back in the day, stories about the apocalypse being a popular genre, sort of like science fiction today.

Much of it is an allegory to the political situation then in existence when the story was written.

I'm sure I haven't got that all perfectly right, but it's close enough for blog commenting purposes.

traditionalguy said...

Interestingly the Morning Joe duo were taking a bow this morning and saying I told you so.

They said they just spent 4 long months being accused by Cruzbots of being biased. But they were only biased for the truth.

The Brezinzki woman of ingrained liberal bias and a 100% female point of view was also celebrating about Trump beating Cruz, whom she apparently despises as a bad Shakespearian Actor. So much for women hating The Donald.

shiloh said...

Not so much the high unfavorables as the reason(s) behind the high unfavorables. Politically incorrect is one thing, whereas kindergarten boorish rude is quite another. Playground tactics may work in a Rep party primary, general election not so much.

Voters still want someone who gives the "appearance" of being presidential.

But Hillary has likability problems also. Stay tuned and keep hope alive!

campy said...

I think Trump can't get elected because no republican can possibly get elected.

Guildofcannonballs said...

And Shiloh gets the coveted 13th comment to this spunky post. Well done all around, like Trump steak.

Brando said...

"I think Trump can't get elected because no republican can possibly get elected."

At this stage I believe that's true (with a slim possibility of a major event changing that). This "he changes all the rules" stuff needs further explanation and not phantom numbers of women, Hispanics and black people who are really big Trump fans (note--doing well among the small numbers of black and Hispanic Republicans is not indicative of the general electorate where they are mostly Democrats).

cubanbob said...

Brando calm down a bit. Hillary may have a fantastic ground game (just like Cruz) but she just isn't a product that sells. So far this year the Democratic turnout in the primaries has been much lower than the turnout four years ago. If the Democrat base isn't energized then Trump could very well win. As rocketeer said an ineffective Trump is vastly more preferable than an effective and dangerous criminal in the White House.

tim maguire said...

How much weight should someone give my claim that Trump can't win when my batting average on Trump can't win claims is .000?

Some people just never tire of being wrong.

shiloh said...

Today's rhetorical question ~ Is Trump uniting or dividing the Rep party?

Will their be a kumbaya hand holding moment in Cleveland?

Toomey?

Portman?

Kirk?

Johnson?

Ayotte?

McCain?

Limited blogger said...

Yeah, no one you guys know will ever vote for Trump. No way.

Kevin said...

Trump can't win implies Hillary can't lose. That says the fix truly is in.

The implication that she can do nothing which would prevent her from winning should be more disturbing than a Trump presidency.

shiloh said...

there not their ~ carry on ...

Balfegor said...

Plot Trump's unfavourables and Clinton's unfavourables over time and extrapolate the trend lines. If they intersect before November, he wins. After November (or never), she wins.

Current trends cannot continue of course, since they would both hit 100% unfavourable before November, I think. But take it as a first approximation.

Michael K said...

I don't know if Trump can win. I guess we will find out. I thought Romney was winning but his GOTV effort was a disaster. That was the GOPe in action.

There is a huge reaction going on in the country that we see as Trump and Bernie. Where it goes is still not clear.

In California, Arnold was elected in a special election brought on by a catastrophic Democrat fuckup in the energy system Gray Davis had blocked electricity utilities from buying generation in long term contracts. He required them to buy daily in the spot market. He obviously knew nothing about energy markets but he used big government power to destroy the existing system.

Obama and the Democrats have destroyed most of the economy. All that remains is the financial industry, big banks and money creation by the Fed. There is a revolt going on by the 90% of the country that has been harmed.

Arnold failed because he tried to do too much too soon. Both he and Ventura were elected in a blue state that was reacting to Democrat failure.

I think the mechanics are similar to what is going on in the country at large. We have a celebrity culture that has lowered the collective IQ to less than 100. How else can we explain the whole LGBT and bathroom farce ? The college rape culture that isn't ? The BLM fiasco that has destroyed the U of Missouri ?

If Trump could not win, I think the U of Missouri would be fine with the craven reaction of administrators to the BLM rioters.

But, you know what has happened? The university is in free fall financially and enrollment is way down. Alumni donations are way down.

If there was no constituency for Trump, why is this happening?

In the 1960s, Nixon described a "Silent Majority" that supported him on Vietnam. In 2009, my daughter at U of Arizona was taught that the "Silent Majority" was made up of white people who rejected the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This stuff has antagonized millions who have had no voice. Now they do.

We'll see what happens.

Nyamujal said...

I agree with some of the points on Adams' list. But this one point made me angry:
"11. Trump can prove he’s not a racist. That’s easy. All he needs to do is hug a bunch of non-white folks on camera. Real racists don’t hug the ones they dislike. They just don’t.
"
Yeah, the minority hive-mind will forget his statements, David Duke endorsement,and white supremacist support because he hugged some colored folk on camera. All the African-American support for Hillary will evaporate if he gets Dennis Rodman and some black pastor on stage with him at a rally. Does he seriously believe this?

Ann Althouse said...

X% of us have a negative opinion of both DT and HC. Think about how these people will be thinking next November. You could just not vote or vote for some 3d party candidate, depriving DT and HC of a vote from within the X%. Or you could pick DT or HC, despite having a negative opinion of him/her. Which is more likely to attract votes from people who don't even like them?

Nonapod said...

In a normal cycle, the idea that Trump can't win because he's unpopular would make a good deal of sense. But we aren't living through an ordinary election cycle. The truth is unknowable at this time. There are far too many big variables that can flip the game board, perhaps the biggest being Hillary's situation with the FBI. I can see many possibilities, several of which end up with Trump as president at the end.

I will say this though, if Trump loses (for whatever reason) there will be endless recriminations and "we told you so"'s from conservative anti-Trumpers that it will further alienate Trump supporters which may permanently fracture the Republican Party.

And if Trump wins we may see gloating from Trump supporters and bitterness and feelings of disenfranchisement from the anti-Trumpers which also may permanently fracture the Republican Party.

Gusty Winds said...

Bill Kristol Twitter Dec 8, 2015, "Sticking with my prediction: Trump will win no caucuses or primaries and will run behind Ron Paul 2012 in IA and NH."

Whatever Scott Adams is, at the moment, he is right. Many other political professionals are wrong. And Adams seems adept at analyzing persuasion on his "3D" level.

Much better than the Law Professor Parker in the previous post.

AllenS said...

At this point in time, there are a lot of unknown unknowns.

AllenS said...

... except for the fact that Trump got most of the votes.

Gusty Winds said...

August 2015: There is no way Trump can win the GOP nomination. His support will fade.

April 2016: OK, we got that wrong, but now there is now way Trump can win the general election.

He is going to be running against Hillary Clinton, and he just wiped out every major political figure in the GOP, many who do not share her level of negatives.

It's going to be fun watching Trump go after her.

Gusty Winds said...

Ann Althouse said...

You could just not vote or vote for some 3d party candidate, depriving DT and HC of a vote from within the X%

Of you could strategically vote for Ted Cruz as a write-in candidate in the general election hoping the Electoral College will elect Paul Ryan.

Bobby said...

Nonapod,

That's the thing, right? Right now, there's so many different variables that could have a substantial impact on this election and we really have no way of knowing how they're going to break, so we can safely reject any talk of can't out of hand. But I assume most people who say can't actually mean something like they think it is "unlikely" or "improbable."

Anyone speaking in absolutes- and, yes, that includes the Trump supporters as much as the Trump haters- are off the mark.

JPS said...

Brando,

That's like arguing "just because that band can't sell records doesn't mean its record sales suck"....there's a lot of people [Trump] is just not reaching, and many more he's turning away,"

Maybe his appeal is just becoming more selective?

Bruce Hayden said...

I think that Scott has some good points. One that he missed, I think, is that Trump is enjoyable for many to watch. You never quite know what he is going to say (and, he may not know in advance). We know that he is going after her for her corruption. But, if she continues to show physical symptoms or weaknesses, I expect that he will concentrate on them. It is bad enough to vote for a corrupt candidate (who is probably going to have to win to keep from being convicted of numerous federal felonies), but it is even worse to vote for one who is too sick to make it through four years in one of the most stressful jobs in the country. Expect him to hit that hard. Heck, we would probably be doing Herself a favor by electing Trump, allowing her to spend her remaining years as the doting grandmother.

I do expect that the MSM will come out in full support mode for Hillary, as they did for Obama, and to some great extent, other Dem candidates. Which includes giving her proxies big play. But, her primary proxies are mostly well known, often with long ties to the Clintons. Everyone knows that DWS, Carville, Stephenopolis, etc. carry water for the Clintons. Always have. Trump just has to call them out, and then point out that Hillary is scared to say these things herself, so has her proxies do it. And, ditto for the MSM - so many of them have Dem ties anyway, that I think that it will be easy.

On the flip side though, Trump is entertaining. Which means that they can't not cover him. If they do, they will lose even more viewership to those who do cover him (notably, but not necessarily, Fox News). I see him as being able to talk over the heads of the MSM trying to sabotage him, as he is already doing.

I found the comment about combatting prejudice interesting. And, I fully expect to see just that - Trump hugging a lot of people of color, gays, etc. Why not? Likely drive the Secret Service crazy. But, I think it will be successful. Hillary doesn't really like people, esp. not anyone not of the elite. Her reign at the White House was notorious, in how badly she treated the staff there, was well as anyone else who was too insignificant to notice (and you had better not make eye contact if you were in such categories if you wanted to keep your job). The reality is that the real Hillary is really a dislikeable person, while Trump is essentially likeable. I don't think that is going to be hard to accentuate for a master performer like Trump.

And, yes, I do worry about a Trump Presidency, from an operational point of view. We mostly all know here that Romney would have been the best candidate in the last couple decades to run the government, but McCain, with his Naval training (esp. as he was being groomed for flag rank), would probably have done a good job too. I am not sure that Trump would be worse than Obama. But, the comparison is not going to be Trump versus Romney, but Trump versus Hillary, whose claim to fame in running something was the abysmal job she did running the State Department. If she tries to leverage that, the natural response is to show the compound burning in Benghazi, the ISIS terrorists executing people, etc., all as a result of her screwing up as Secretary of State. Which is why I don't think that looking at Govs. Ventura and Swartzinager will be that effective against Trump. He may not be the greatest at running things, but has run some successful companies, and that will be contrasted to Hillary at State.

mikee said...

I believe I was the first, or at least among the first, to direct our blog host's attention to the Dilbert author's blog postings on the Donald. Can I put that on my resume in an effectual manner, or should I just be quietly proud of this accomplishment?

CarlF said...

No, a person with 70% negatives (or 65% as I saw in the April 25 George Washington University Battleground Poll) should not even consider running. But, the GWU poll that showed that Hillary's negatives were at 56%, despite having a protective press.

Although I am for Cruz, I do not see that election as being pre-determined at this time if Trump gets it. Hillary is not inevitable. To the contrary, it seems the more people view Hillary, the less support she receives.

mccullough said...

The overlap of people who don't like either Trump or Hillary will decide the election. Whose base is bigger in key states, Hillary or Trump's? Hillary's base is smaller than Obama even including those who don't like Hillary but detest Trump and will vote against him by voting for Hillary. How big is Trump's base plus those who detest Hillary and will vote agai at her by voting Trump and is it bigger, smaller or about the same as Hilary's?

mccullough said...

How much do Hillary and the DNC hate Sanders for continuing his campaign and repeating the theme that Hillary is a war monger and the handmaiden of Wall Street. He repeats those criticisms with such sincerity that it's obvious he dislikes Hillary as much as Obama does.

Michael K said...

" Her reign at the White House was notorious, in how badly she treated the staff there, was well as anyone else who was too insignificant to notice "

This will be pointed out and, I suspect, there will be figures from her past coming out with reminiscences. I expect to see a resurgence of sales of Gary Aldrich's book about her.

In fact, if I were him, I would be very careful crossing streets.

I think Cruz has taken himself out of the VP consideration. Here's a suggestion. What not ask Romney to be VP ?

JPS said...

Nyamujal,

"Yeah, the minority hive-mind will forget his statements, David Duke endorsement, and white supremacist support because he hugged some colored folk on camera. All the African-American support for Hillary will evaporate…."

You know, not only do I not believe in a minority hive-mind, I don't want to. It's an awful concept and I damn well know it's not true. But all the African-American support for Hillary does tempt me sometimes, in part because I don't find Hillary's shows of solidarity any less cynical or staged for political gain than Trump's hypothetical hugging of some "colored folk" on television.

It seems to boil down to, she's on our side, those other guys are not - so vote for her. Well, I wish all her supporters all the joy her presidency can bring. My prediction is they'll be worse off for it, and looking back they'll blame it on all those horrible people who stopped her from really doing it right, and call for the only possible cure: More liberalism, more federal involvement in our lives.

Gusty Winds said...

Has Hillary officially declared her gender identity yet?

Anglelyne said...

Nyamujal: Yeah, the minority hive-mind will forget his statements, David Duke endorsement,and white supremacist support because he hugged some colored folk on camera.

So, there is a "minority hive-mind"? Guess that makes some sense, stats-wise, because "minorities" have tended to vote one way, either monolithically or by very large majorities. I agree that Trump probably won't pull a lot of minority votes (though I wouldn't be shocked if he did better than the 'pub grovelers on that score).

Voters lacking in hive-mindedness would be less likely to be bothered by the inevitable marginal or extreme figures that "endorse" or otherwise attach themselves to a candidate. Demographically, whites seem to be the least "hive-y" by that criterion, since the liberal-leaning among them don't seem to be bothered by the noisy identitarians and outright racists that attach themselves to the Dem machine. That may be changing, though.

Chuck said...

I will say this though, if Trump loses (for whatever reason) there will be endless recriminations and "we told you so"'s from conservative anti-Trumpers that it will further alienate Trump supporters which may permanently fracture the Republican Party.


To put it very mildly: Yes.

Brando said...

"Hillary may have a fantastic ground game (just like Cruz) but she just isn't a product that sells. So far this year the Democratic turnout in the primaries has been much lower than the turnout four years ago. If the Democrat base isn't energized then Trump could very well win."

Hillary will campaign on fear--that's the turnout she'll need. She hasn't anything else.

"Yeah, the minority hive-mind will forget his statements, David Duke endorsement,and white supremacist support because he hugged some colored folk on camera. All the African-American support for Hillary will evaporate if he gets Dennis Rodman and some black pastor on stage with him at a rally. Does he seriously believe this?"

That was Scott's weakest point (the hair thing made more sense) and I assume he forgot to edit it. Hug a few more minorities on camera? If only Romney had thought of that!

I'd understand an argument that Trump could explain away his racial gaffes as off the cuff remarks and focus instead on how he'd bring back jobs and keep the social safety net (his drifting from conservative orthodoxy could help him there) and of course go a few months without further incidents. But the "hug a black guy" remark sounds more like satire.

mccullough said...

The conservative anti Trumpers put up a conservative that Republican primary voters don't like. Is it his positions or his personality they don't like? Cruz is a poor messenger. Republican primary voters don't like him and he has no substantive experience. He called a basketball hoop a ring yesterday. Canadians don't even call it that. Does he know anything about sports? Typical Ivy League fool

Alexander said...

I will say this though, if Trump loses (for whatever reason) there will be endless recriminations and "we told you so"'s from conservative anti-Trumpers that it will further alienate Trump supporters which may permanently fracture the Republican Party.

Let them come. Just make sure they bring Bush I, Dole, McCain, and Romney with them.

Anglelyne said...

Nonapod: I will say this though, if Trump loses (for whatever reason) there will be endless recriminations and "we told you so"'s from conservative anti-Trumpers that it will further alienate Trump supporters which may permanently fracture the Republican Party.

And if Trump wins we may see gloating from Trump supporters and bitterness and feelings of disenfranchisement from the anti-Trumpers which also may permanently fracture the Republican Party.


"May"? The party has already ready fractured. Your two descriptions are just the alternate "all over but the cryin'" scenarios.

JPS said...

Nyamujal,

Re "minority hive-mind": I may not have been clear, but I do realize you were being sarcastic, and using the term in contempt of anyone who think there is one. I meant to begin my earlier comment by rejecting the concept myself, not by arguing with you over a position you do not hold.

Miriam said...

"8. Trump has already improved his haircut. The color is no longer orange and the cut is much better. Humans are visual creatures, and that old haircut probably accounted for about 10 points of his 70% unfavorable rating...."

Really? His hair looked particularily orange yesterday.

Sebastian said...

"He called a basketball hoop a ring yesterday. Canadians don't even call it that. Does he know anything about sports? Typical Ivy League fool." Unlike that Wharton grad Drumpf who called Bob Knight "Bobby." Man of the people you got there.

JPS said...

mccullough:

"Is it his positions or his personality they don't like?"

Well I'm right there with him on most policy questions, and I'm delighted to learn there's someone out there even more clueless about sports than I am, yet I find it tough to like him or feel enthusiasm for his candidacy. It's not fair and I can't quite put my finger on why, but there it is.

boycat said...

Hillary is the poster child for politicians with high unfavorability ratings. The Democrat base can't stand her. Many of these people will vote for Trump in a heartbeat, not against him. Even white women have turned on her. Liberal white women may not migrate to Trump in huge numbers, but I'd wager at least some will, and many will vote with their feet by not voting and staying home in November.

Bill Peschel said...

Scott Adams is a self-serving cynical hack who belongs in a rat pit smeared with bacon.

He's no different from any of the other media vipers swarming over this broken system, chewing off what they can and crapping the results for our entertainment, more fool us.

His point-by-point plan for making Trump electable is mere virtue-signaling. Can any candidate truly correct their faults? Look at Hillary. She campaigns in the exact same way that she did eight years ago, and with similar results.

The only person I can think of is Nixon, and he concealed his faults, not change them.

If Adams thinks Trump can truly change, he is a fool. If he doesn't, he's cynically playing us for fools.

Sebastian said...

"The overlap of people who don't like either Trump or Hillary will decide the election." Sure, but lefties who don't like Hillary will vote for her. Moderate women who don't like Trump or Hillary will vote for Hillary. Some Nevertrumpers will stay home. Result: Hill by a landslide, particularly in OH, FL, VA, and CO.

Sebastian said...

"If Adams thinks Trump can truly change, he is a fool." Or as a famous playwright once said, if you're in a con game and you don't know who the mark is, you're the mark.

mccullough said...

It would be a landslide against Cruz as well. People just don't like him.

Rocketeer said...

Yeah, no one you guys know will ever vote for Trump. No way.

Speaking only for myself, I cannot stand Trump. In fact, the only thing that could possibly get me to vote for him is if Clinton or Sanders is the democratic nominee.

Nyamujal said...

"Re "minority hive-mind": I may not have been clear, but I do realize you were being sarcastic, and using the term in contempt of anyone who think there is one.I meant to begin my earlier comment by rejecting the concept myself, not by arguing with you over a position you do not hold"

I get your point, and yes, I was being sarcastic.

Michael K said...

"Hillary is the poster child for politicians with high unfavorability ratings."

I think this is why Bill has made some odd statements the last few months. He senses that Hillary is not a good candidate and is worried that she may destroy the party that he rehabilitated.

"Even white women have turned on her. Liberal white women may not migrate to Trump in huge numbers"

Or stay home.

This is a very interesting year. Both parties may change a lot. The Democrats may shift to a Socialist Party and the GOP may become much more populist,

mockturtle said...

We seldom hear about one of Trump's positives: He has his own money. That's important to many of us.

Nyamujal said...

"Guess that makes some sense, stats-wise, because "minorities" have tended to vote one way, either monolithically or by very large majorities.... Demographically, whites seem to be the least "hive-y" by that criterion, since the liberal-leaning among them don't seem to be bothered by the noisy identitarians and outright racists that attach themselves to the Dem machine. "

Not really, the GOP deployed the southern strategy for half a century to shore up support in old Confederate states by appeals to racial resentment and white solidarity. Identity politics is alive and well on the right, it's just something you choose not to acknowledge.

Anglelyne said...

Nyamujal: I get your point, and yes, I was being sarcastic.

But there is a "hive mind" tendency in human groups, and in voting behavior, regardless of whether anybody finds it contemptible (or how much sarcasm you heap on the idea). If there weren't, we wouldn't be talking about the "black vote" or the "white male vote" or the "Hispanic vote" in the first place. Voting behavior is most certainly predictable along racial and ethnic lines.

You are correct that the "minority hive-mind" is not going to be persuaded by a cheesy hug-fest stunt, but that just says that a group of people aren't going to vote a certain way, not that there's nothing "groupish" about the way they do vote.

Saint Croix said...

Many people in the media are obsessed with the horse race aspects of politics. Who is winning? Who is losing?

The unspoken assumption is that the winner must be good and right and just, and the loser must be bad and wrong and unjust. At this point the strongest argument to vote for Trump--the only argument people seem to have--is that he is a winner. Vote for the winner so you can be a winner too!

It is a colossal blunder, a stupid and idiotic mistake.

boycat said...

mockturtle @10:59 said...
We seldom hear about one of Trump's positives: He has his own money. That's important to many of us.


It liberates him, frees him up to be who he is, owned by nobody, beholding to nobody, particularly not the Chamber of Commerce or anybody else on K Street.

Michael K said...

Not really, the GOP deployed the southern strategy for half a century to shore up support in old Confederate states by appeals to racial resentment and white solidarity.

The "Southern Strategy" was more an appeal to those (and yes they were white) who were offended by the overreaching of the Democrats and the left with forced busing and nonsense like the federal judge who took over the Kansas City school system and spent millions, proving that money does not solve minority (black) school failures.

Michael K said...

Oh, and Kansas was not in "The Old Confederacy."

Will said...

As my wife repeatedly tells me: "Hillary is not a woman."

You can discuss Trump negatives, but Hillary Clinton has so much baggage…..

From stealing the White House china, to renting out the Lincoln bedroom, to grimly standing by her cheating man, to her very average record as a healthcare consultant, senator and Secy of State, to selling influence on a truly galactic scale, to the cynical setup of a FOIA-avoling email server to keep her slimy self-dealing private, to selling Presidential pardons to Marc Rich, to the setup of Clinton shell companies in Sweden to avoid transparency on her vast questionable money flows, she is everything that makes an honest person's skin crawl.

Sure Trump has his own issues but I would not discount his ability to bring new light to Hillary's awful record and her complete lack of Character

Anglelyne said...

Nyajumal: Not really, the GOP deployed the southern strategy for half a century to shore up support in old Confederate states by appeals to racial resentment and white solidarity. Identity politics is alive and well on the right, it's just something you choose not to acknowledge.

I didn't "choose not to acknowledge" anything. I didn't say whites lacked "hive-iness", I suggested that, at present, they tended to be less "hive-y" in general than other groups. Which is what one would predict, for a majority group, and what you would predict to change, when demographics change.

As you rightly pointed out, "appeals to racial resentment and [racial] solidarity" are used to get votes in certain places.

pm317 said...

Trump is the male version of Pygmalion

Bobby said...

Michael K,

"This is a very interesting year. Both parties may change a lot. The Democrats may shift to a Socialist Party and the GOP may become much more populist,"

This is the Libertarian dream.

tim maguire said...

Both parties are intent on nominating their least likable candidate. And each party courts disaster in its own way.

The Democrats have Biden waiting in the wings. Who do the Republicans have?

tim maguire said...

Nyamujal said... the GOP deployed the southern strategy for half a century to shore up support in old Confederate states by appeals to racial resentment and white solidarity.

The Southern Strategy is a liberal fantasy. It's purpose is to hold Republicans responsible for generations of Democratic racism.

Bobby said...

Michael K,

"Oh, and Kansas was not in "The Old Confederacy.""

Nor is the Kansas City of your linked Cato Study in Kansas-- it's in Missouri.

EMD said...

or should I just be quietly proud of this accomplishment?

too late.

jr565 said...

I think Trump has a disadvantage because of his high unfavorability. But he could turn it around if he combats the narrative.
so, take his argument from yesterday that If Hillary clinton was a man she wouldn't haven any support and that she played the gender card.
So he then went on tv and one of the reporters asked him what he meant by the palying the woman card. And, as per usual, he couldn't really articulate it. This is going to be a problem for him if he doesn't bone up on counters to arguments that will be throw at him.
So a counter to that is that many women have said you need to vote for Hillary Clinton becuase shes a woman. Like Madeline Albright.
You also have other women who made the point that its offensive to vote for Hillary just because she's a woman. People like Rosario Dawson have made the point that she doesn't have to, just because Hillary is a woman. Trump needs to be better about using his opponents own words against them.

Nyamujal said...

" I suggested that, at present, they tended to be less "hive-y" in general than other groups. Which is what one would predict, for a majority group, and what you would predict to change, when demographics change."

I agree with you. This hasn't happened before :-)

"The Southern Strategy is a liberal fantasy. It's purpose is to hold Republicans responsible for generations of Democratic racism."

Ken Mehlman in 2005: "Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman apologized to one of the nation's largest black civil rights groups Thursday, saying Republicans had not done enough to court blacks in the past and had exploited racial strife to court white voters, particularly in the South."

Anyone who has a passing familiarity with American history and politics ought to recognize how the parties have changed over the years. The GOP of 50's - present day isn't the party of Lincoln.

Wikipedia has a decent entry on the subject: "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_strategy"

Nut country is also a good book on the topic: http://www.amazon.com/Nut-Country-Right-Wing-Southern-Strategy/dp/022620538X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1461778127&sr=8-1&keywords=nut+country


Anglelyne said...

tim maguire: The Southern Strategy is a liberal fantasy. It's purpose is to hold Republicans responsible for generations of Democratic racism.

Wasting energy defending the Southern Strategy as "absolutely not racist!" is just letting the progs frame the issue. Did it appeal to whites and succeed at getting their vote? Yes, it did. So what? Dems make explicit racial appeals nonstop; why the hell should you have to explain or apologize about anything to them? White citizens had (have) legitimate interests and legitimate grievances, some of which intersect with racial issues. No need to eternally play defense here. It doesn't work, anyway.

Neither do the conservative echo-chamber favorites like "Dems are the real racists!" or "Dems are the party of Jim Crow!". Absolutely nobody outside of those venues gives a shit.

dc said...

If in a debate between Trump and Clinton, Hillary decides to take a restroom break could the left complain if The Donald decided to follow her into the same restroom?
Question I would not have asked only a year ago.

ken in tx said...

I have not seen any politician of either major party appeal to white solidarity and racial resentment, since George Wallace, and he changed his tune eventually. I have seen Democrats appeal to racial resentment and black solidarity. That's the real Southern Strategy. It works in urban areas both North and South.

Ken B said...

I await Beldar's response: "Meh. You just wait 'til we have another voterless election. Then Cruz'll show him."

jamescbennett said...

Negatives are qualitative as well as quantitative. Trump is loathed because he is seen as arrogant and crass. Clinton is loathed because she is seen as deceitful and manipulative. If the general public are forced to choose between being ruled by a crass, arrogant man or a deceitful, manipulative woman, my money is on the man.

Brando said...

"So he then went on tv and one of the reporters asked him what he meant by the palying the woman card. And, as per usual, he couldn't really articulate it. This is going to be a problem for him if he doesn't bone up on counters to arguments that will be throw at him."

And there's a good argument to make--it's like the old expression, "you have a good point, if only you'd make it." When I first heard he said it I thought "good, it's right, now drive it home". After all, if you take away Hillary's being a woman she really has nothing--a mediocre and scandal-ridden longtime pol with no real skills or policies. But Trump's strategy--which has at least in the primaries worked for him--has been off the cuff, and one of the downsides is it prevents him from making the most devastating arguments and most effective defenses.

FullMoon said...

ken in tx said... [hush]​[hide comment]

I have not seen any politician of either major party appeal to white solidarity and racial resentment, since George Wallace, and he changed his tune eventually. I have seen Democrats appeal to racial resentment and black solidarity. That's the real Southern Strategy. It works in urban areas both North and South.


Amusing to see the left accuse the right of being against allowing felons to vote because it helps republicans- thereby identifying felons as democrats. And, they don't even realize it.

hugh42 said...

Love how you deconstruct. I'm learning from you all the time. Must acquire more taste for innovative thinking. Bravo.

David Begley said...

If Trump shot Scott Adams dead, his estate would praise Trump.

Shill. He makes Hannity look fair and balanced.

A33Master said...

You are being silly. The reason why unfavorability is discussed today is because it is often the barometer of tomorrow's unfavorability. Likewise, the reason why unfavorability of today is discussed is because what makes a candidate unfavorable in one's opinion often does not change. It may sound like a circular argument but only if you are unaware of its temporal element. You know, time is an important factor in our cognitive behaviors.